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Justin K

Marvelous Designer to Houdini

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Anybody have any experience working between the two packages?       Currently the goal is to build the clothing design in Marvelous Designer-- on models rigged and animated in Houdini.  

As far as the plan, it would seem there are to basic approaches--

1) send the animation into mixamo from houdini then do the cloth and simulation as one take, problem is this would mean any interactivity between the cloth and other simulations in houdini (rain, solid objects) would be limited.  

 

2) OR

T-pose the character -- send the character to mixamo for the cloth design and then back into Houdini for the actual cloth sim and everything else.  

 

 

Any thoughts or opinions on this?  Pretty early in the process- but just looking for some suggestions and ideas--and potentially warnings about headaches lol.

 

Thanks in advance!  

Edited by Justin K

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I did a couple of characters when I had a subscription to MD. My workflow was to generate the character in Make Human, export as FBX with a FK rig. Then I animated the character in Houdini and kicked out an OBJ sequence which I imported into Marvelous Designer as an animated collision mesh. I implemented a 1 second hold on the t-pose for export. I would recommend at least 2-3 second hold because it takes MD a while to settle down at the start of a simulation. I did basic cloth draping on the first static frame, and designed my garment, then I ran the simulation in MD. Once the simulation was complete I exported just the clothing as an .obj sequence then brought that back into Houdini and converted it to a .bgeo.sc sequence. One of the gotchas to look out for is setting the correct FPS for the Marvelous Designer solver. If you have an FPS mismatch between Houdini and MD you'll know prety quickly because the clothes will start swimming a bit and not align properly. I also experienced a one frame offset in the process so you will have to correct for that once you have the final sequence.

Overall, it was a painful process. I chose the .obj sequence because that was the only export option that worked for me (all others crashed MD). Even though MD claims it supports Alembic, don't count on it. But that was a version or so ago so the MD team may have improved upon that. But it was very disappointing to wait for hours of MD simulation, get to the end, choose File export Alembic and have MD crash.

The magic number to set the MD solver to is 0.04166666666 (1/24) adjust for your FPS as need, MD defaults to 30 FPS and Houdini defaults to 24 FPS.

Once you have an .obj sequence out of MD you should be able to use it just fine inside Houdini as a deforming collision mesh.

Overall Marvelous Designer is a better tool for authoring cloth garments, compared to Houdini. MD supports way more stitching, it is resolution independent and multi-threaded. Houdini is single threaded, not resolution independent and can only support a few stitches before it gets too confused to complete the task.

 

Good luck.

Edited by Atom
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I have seen a couple of workflows but most notably, authoring in MD is a no brainer, then do all the sim in Houdini so you have an integrated simulation pipeline where cloth responds to RBDs, etc...

The normal approach is to sim on a simpler mesh and then drive the high res with it, this also allows for a much faster iteration if you have constant changes like we do in commercials...

I hope it helps

jb

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thanks for the tips both of you--- the tpose thing was something I actually had in mind to begin with--getting the clarification that that is the way to go is appreciated.  

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8 hours ago, jordibares said:

I have seen a couple of workflows but most notably, authoring in MD is a no brainer, then do all the sim in Houdini so you have an integrated simulation pipeline where cloth responds to RBDs, etc...

The normal approach is to sim on a simpler mesh and then drive the high res with it, this also allows for a much faster iteration if you have constant changes like we do in commercials...

I hope it helps

jb

as for this approach-- one concern I have is the time alloted to have the sim 'calm down'---if i was to do the cloth in marvelous designer on just a tposed character and then send it to houdini for an additional sim arent you encountering this settling twice?  and would this potentially cause issues?  Just curious ?

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It depends on how "real" you want the cloth to look. You could just drape your garment on a static t-pose character and export only the clothes as an .OBJ. Bring that .OBJ into Houdini and place it on top of the same t-pose character. Then use a PointDeform node to deform the clothing to the character as it moves. This would not require a simulation at all and is probably the fastest way to accomplish moving clothes on a character. Game characters are often done this way. Where the clothes are effectively the "skin". With this technique you can also delete any underlying faces that the clothes cover to make the mesh even more light weight.

Edited by Atom

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